It's going to be a busy couple of weeks for Buffalo-based composer Persis Vehar. At 2:30 p.m. Tuesday she will talk about her compositions during the free lecture "From Buffalo to Bukowski," to be delivered in Room 118 of Lyons Hall in Canisius College, where she is composer-in-residence. Much of her talk's focus will be on the relationship between Buffalo and Charles Bukowski, described as a working-class American poet. One of the Buffalo references involves Buffalo-born bass-baritone Valerian Ruminski. Ruminski's recent activities include making his Metropolitan Opera debut and commissioning Vehar to compose a cycle of six songs set to Bukowski's poems.
All well and good, but there is a logical follow-up. During the first week in October, Ruminski will be in town to present the world premiere of Vehar's new songs, titled "Bukowski: Blood, Guts and Tears." This is the third cycle Vehar has composed to Bukowski's poetry. The recital will be prefaced at 8 p.m. Oct. 2 by a reading of Bukowski's works by Ruminski, with additional commentary by Vehar, in Hallwalls Gallery. Then at 8 p.m. Oct. 3 in Canisius' Montante Cultural Center, Ruminski will be accompanied by pianist William Hicks in the first performance of Vehar's new song cycle. Soprano Mary Kay Barrington will participate in the recital, which also includes works by Verdi, Mozart, Handel, Gershwin, Kern and Bach. For information, call 888-2790.